Mapping the Composition and Distribution of Medieval Pottery in South East Wales

  • Michael Anthony

    Student thesis: Master's Thesis


    This thesis is concerned with the provenancing by chemical analysis, or chemical fingerprinting, of Welsh medieval ceramics.

    The study initially presents an overview and summary of our knowledge of the medieval Welsh ceramic industry as it currently stands. Subsequent chapters present additional overviews of the chemical testing of ceramic material and statistical techniques applicable to ceramic analysis.

    In order to carry out the aims and objectives of the analysis, one hundred and sixteen ceramic sherds were collected from five different locations throughout Gwent and Glamorgan. The samples were ground into a powder and pressed into solid disk form. These were analysed using a Philips PW1400 X-Ray
    Fluorescence Spectrometer (XRF)

    The results were analysed via computerised statistical packages. Initially using univariate and bivariate analysis, the final, multivariate analysis tests carried out were Principal Components Analysis, Correspondence Analysis and Discriminant Analysis. The statistical analysis suggests that other, simpler, techniques which provide useful information are often overlooked in favour of the more complex multivariate techniques. As a result of these tests conclusions are drawn regarding the relationship between the fabrics of the Monnow Valley. Further tests examine the relationship between the fabrics of Kenfig and the Vale of Glamorgan where a new classification system for these wares is proposed.

    Finally a brief examination of trade and distribution patterns suggests areas for future research.
    Date of Award2004
    Original languageEnglish


    • Chemical analysis
    • Welsh Medieval Ceramics
    • Wales
    • Monnow Valley
    • Kenfig
    • Vale of Glamorgan
    • Pottery
    • Principal Components Analysis
    • Correspondence Analysis
    • Discriminant Analysis

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